Russian Defense Minister: Russia-iran Military Cooperation Agreement Not To Change Balance Of Forces In Region

The agreement on military-technological cooperation, which was signed on Tuesday between Russia and Iran, will not affect the alignment of forces in the region, said Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov. He underscored that Russia had never stood for changing the balance of the forces in the region, even more so upsetting it. In the opinion of the Russian Defense Minister, signing of this agreement creates the prerequisites for a normal military-technological cooperation between the two countries. According to Sergei Ivanov, during the current visit to Russia by the Iranian minister, he will discuss in the government and in the Security Council the civilian projects which are envisaged by various agreements between Russia and Iran. Sergei Ivanov mentioned considerable projects in the spheres of energy and transport, including the creation of the so-called north-south transport corridor. At their meeting, Sergei Ivanov and Iranian Defense Minister Ali Shamkhani discussed also the problems of security in the Caspian Sea region. As was pointed out by the Iranian minister, for settling the situation in the Caspian Sea region "there is no need for the presence of the third countries." Sergei Ivanov agreed with this point of view and added that at the present time the five Caspian countries were intensively looking for ways of settling the situation concerning the Caspian Sea.

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